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Posts tagged ‘frugal organic meals’

Quick Meals – Round 2!

When I was a kid, we had “breakfast for dinner night” at least once a week. As a child, I thought my mom was being creative…maybe even a bit daring – breaking all the meal time rules.  As an adult, I know the truth. It was fast, cheap, full of protein, and everyone would eat it.

My kinda meal.

We have breakfast for dinner at least once a week around here. What used to be pancakes and sausage or french toast and eggs is now far more protein packed, and entirely lacking in fluffy goodness, but still delicious.

A recent trip to my favorite Grocery Outlet resulted in a freezer full of these:

applegatesausage

 

Quality sausages made by a reputable company for $1.49? Yes please! These puppies sell for $5.99 at my Whole Foods so I did not hesitate to buy a huge stack of them. If you have a Grocery Outlet near you, check it out. It’s not at all what it used to be. Great way to provide awesome food to your family on a frugal budget.

Back to the food.

These sausages are pre-cooked, so all you have to do is crisp them up.

While they were frying, I scrambled up a dozen organic, free-range eggs (I’m feeding five here!) in some good quality butter…and yes, some sausage drippings. My CSA has amazing eggs, but I missed out on them this week, so I grabbed a dozen from my mama’s backyard hens. If you don’t have access to free-range eggs, organic is the next best option. Grocery Outlet usually has those, too!

I chopped up some seasonal fruit from my CSA box, served up some iced  mint tea,  and called it dinner.

breakfast for dinner

I always serve eggs with some of my fresh salsa too. It adds loads of flavor, and is a great way to toss in a few extra nutrients for everyone. I am realizing more and more how valuable it is to preserve things from my box each week. A little salsa in the freezer, a little mint, dried and stored in a jar. Little by little, I’m finding ways to not only extend the life of my food, but ways to plan ahead even more than I already do.

If you eat potatoes, they would be so awesome with this meal,  cooked up with onion and jalapenos. Every week, when I place my CSA order, I see potatoes on the list, and it is so hard to resist them every time. I allow myself potatoes once or twice a month, and my next two recipes with feature two of the dishes I use them for (including a potato, bacon and arugula frittata!)

This girl loves a potato.

And breakfast for dinner night.

 

 

 

GRAIN FREE PIZZA! (Yes, Really! Purple Pesto Too!)

I am so excited about this, you have no idea.  I have officially (perhaps accidentally) made the world’s most delicious pizza, and it’s not on the list of forbidden foods.

Also, that is an exaggeration. Nothing beats Me-n-Eds pizza. I miss it so much. This may be the world’s most delicious grain free pizza, however.

I will still claim this is a victory, and victory is sweet.

I have tried a few grain free pizza crust recipes and was not terribly impressed. Then I found one made from tapioca flour and it was decent. Then I ran low on tapioca flour and substituted half of the needed amount of tapioca with arrowroot and OMG it was perfection.

When made with tapioca flour, it had a certain pie crust quality to it. It was delicious, don’t get me wrong, but the arrowroot allowed it to be a bit more cracker-y, which I really, really liked. I will be saving the original recipe, however, to make the pie crust topping for my favorite  chicken pot pie soup. I thought I was going to have to go without it this winter…there is hope once more. 😉 I love beautiful accidents. For the original recipe, go HERE.

Back to the pizza.

I made a very simple but delicious pizza using some delicious CSA items the other night. Cracker crust, purple pesto (recipe to follow), sliced chicken breast tossed with some of the pesto, mozzarella cheese and bell peppers.

I started with the pesto. I really might cry when my CSA stops offering the purple basil. It’s so incredibly flavorful and yet more mild that its italian counterpart.  I’m obsessed. To make the pesto, I gathered the following:

purplepesto1

4 cups purple basil leaves (this was two bundles for me)

1/2 cup raw almonds (cashew would work beautifully too, but they are on our “forbidden” list right now)

2 tsp crushed garlic

1/2 tsp real salt (any salt you have will work, this is just the one I have been using.)

at least 6 TBSP cold pressed olive oil

In a food processor or blender, pulse the almonds until they are fine and almost powdery. Then add the basil, and pulse until combined.  Add garlic and salt and continue to pulse or blend until all is combined. Drizzle in olive oil until pesto is at the desired consistency. I like mine to have enough oil to be spreadable. I probably used about 1/3 cup of olive oil in mine. Keep in mind, from here on out, and I never professed to be a food photographer.

purple pesto done

I will admit to you that it’s not a very pretty color. It sort of looks like potting soil. The taste is so worth it though, trust me. I also love to use almonds or cashews in pesto because pine nuts are so darn expensive. Also, this pesto does not call for parmesan cheese, so its vegan approved. 🙂

Set the pesto aside and get to work on the pizza crust now. 🙂

For the crust, you will need:

1/2 cup tapioca flour/starch

1/2 cup arrowroot

1/3 cup raw shredded parm cheese (I love TJ’s)

4 TBSP of refined coconut oil or other high-heat oil such as high-oleic sunflower

1 TBSP water

1 organic egg

Combine all ingredients. It will be sticky and kind of gummy.

Prepare 2 pieces of parchment paper the same size as your pizza pan ( you can trim the edges later)

BRUSH BOTH PIECES OF PARCHMENT WITH OLIVE OIL. IF YOU DO NOT DO THIS, YOU WILL END UP WITH A STICKY MESS.

Scrape the batter/ dough onto the first piece of parchment (on the greased side.) Now lay the other piece, greased side down, onto the dough. With a rolling pin, roll the crust out into a circle.

Peel the top piece of parchment off and discard. Put the crust, parchment and all, onto your pizza pan.

Carefully, with the back of a spoon, spread your purple peso over the entire thing. You will use about 1 cup. Reserve the rest for later.

purple pesto spread

Now, top with cheese.

purple pesto cheese

If you would like meat on your pizza, sautee some thinly sliced (about 1/4 in thick strips) chicken breast in a bit of butter or refined coconut oil. (I used 2 chicken breasts) Season with salt, garlic, and then about 1/2 cup of your pesto. Once cooked, add to the top of your pizza, along with whatever other goodies you want. I added some bell peppers from my CSA box. 

purple pesto chickenpeppers

Trim excess parchment off of the edges and Bake for 20-25 minutes at 400*.

purple pesto pizza slice

 

ENJOY!

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